Long Covid Persists

During 2021 Gef published a number of articles on the subject of Long Covid & Covid recovery. A local parent has recently been in touch to express their gratitude and to suggest the content may still be useful for those who have recently tested positive for Covid or are still recovering from the virus.

They explain that ‘this article was the first time I found out that a ‘mild’ Covid infection could lead to Long Covid. Now we know they actually make up the majority of Long Covid cases’.

‘I had no idea how important rest was for post-viral recovery until I read this article by Gef. The patient approach it outlines went against ideas I’ve grown up with, like you should push yourself and ‘get back to normal’ as fast as possible after being ill or being encouraged to struggle on with activities whilst ill. I’ve shared this article so many times with people who’ve tested positive and/or are recovering from Covid because it’s such important advice and many are still not aware of it.’

‘This advice was invaluable for my family when we caught Covid.  My children have developed Long Covid, but following this advice early on was a great help. It’s awful to think how much worse things could have been without this advice!’

Facts and Figures

In January of this year the DHSC Minister Lawrie Hooper released our island’s Long COVID figures in response to a written question from Speaker Juan Watterson. He said: ‘Based on the updated ONS data, the estimated workload of Long Covid patients on the Isle of Man is 1,306 people who are suffering a functional impairment of over 12 weeks, with 522 people suffering from Long Covid symptoms for more than 12 months.’ 

Mild Cases Still at Risk

Last year Dr David Strain, the BMA’s former lead on the NHS Long Covid Taskforce, explained in a BBC interview that Long Covid generally falls into two categories:

‘There’s long covid that can be attributed to a really bad case of covid in the first instance… but then the surprising group that has come out of this is a group of individuals that didn’t get particularly bad covid but who 2-3 months later are still left with this chronic debilitating fatigue.

‘If anything we’re seeing it more common in the younger patients, the fitter, the very active, the ones who may have got over the initial disease very quickly, but are left with long debilitating symptoms.

Dr Strain, further explained that studies have shown that commonly ‘people who have got long covid are people who caught it in the first instance and tried to work through it. They tried to say, ‘it’s only a mild disease, I’ll shrug it off and I’ll get on’ and the result is they’ve been left with much more lasting consequences.” His advice is “take it easy, go easy on yourself for two, maybe three or four weeks’.

Useful Resources

Two years from the onset of the pandemic the quality of resources available to support Long Covid sufferers is improving: